Opening the crate!
We received the body of the spacecraft in mid-June, on a direct flight from Spain. You may imagine this as a festive reception, complete with a red carpet and trumpet fanfare. If so, you’ll be surprised to hear that this was not the case. The crate was dispatched by a freight forwarder directly to the IAI facility, in the cargo hold of a regular passenger airplane.
The crate containing the body of the spacecraft was transferred to the “clean room”, and was carefully opened by the qualified team of engineers who are responsible for performing the mechanical works. As you can see, the crate contained two plates – an upper plate and a lower one – and reinforcing rods.
As part of the manufacturing process, the manufacturer assembles the body of the spacecraft before dispatching it, in order to verify that all its components are as they should be, and fit together properly. After completing the initial assembly and checks, the manufacturer numbers the parts according to the precise position they need to be in, and then disassembles the parts, packs them and dispatches them to us.
Before assembling the spacecraft, the parts must be thoroughly cleaned. Therefore, one of the first processes performed after unpacking is “baking”: the parts are placed in a special oven, which is also situated in the “clean room”. When they are removed from the oven, they are optimally clean and approved for use.
Now, when everything is ready, we can begin assembling the spacecraft.
The body of the spacecraft comprises the cornerstone of the entire assembly process. It is the basic part of the spacecraft, upon which all the additional parts will be assembled. It holds immense significance for the mission. If the body is not strong enough, the spacecraft will not be able to function. To ensure that it is up to the task, two bodies have been manufactured: one will be used to assemble the actual spacecraft that we will launch, and the other will undergo various strength tests.
To the moon!
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